I am Araatris Dreadwatcher, demon hunter of the Netherbane and thero’shan–student–of Tharion Greyseer. I began as the daughter of Kirie and Xyus Valryss and worked as a human tracker.
That girl died the day a demon was bound to her.
Originally, I chose the path for the same reason many do. Revenge. I wanted to hurt the demons the same way that they had hurt me. I was selfish and blind. A blindness of the heart that was more terrible for me than the blinding I have suffered since, an ache I live with every day.
I’m not perfect. Even now I get angry at demons for what they’ve done. I’ve learned that I want to protect more than exterminate. What good is killing all the demons if they are thousands more orphans are created in the crossfire? What good is it if no one is left to enjoy the world we have worked to create? I fight to create a world in which others can live free of demons, a world I’ll never enjoy. It is my path that will work to make this goal possible.
The path can follow many different ways of thought, and each school of demon hunting has their own rituals and beliefs. I have learned the skills of a Netherbane demon hunter from my shan’do, Tharion Greyseer, who in turn was taught by Eraelan Netherbane. Yet, our current methods do not entirely match those of Eraelan. Every teacher brings their own perspective.
As far as skills, my training included demons, combat, discipline, and rituals. I won’t bore you with the details, but that training was critical to my life. Without it, I would have been nothing more than demon fodder.
Rituals are another part of developing as a demon hunter. While there are core rituals that most demon hunters experience, there are some that are specific to the person and situation. I have been through both.
My first rituals were blinding and binding at the same time. I don’t think it’s common for them to line up and be done together, but it certainly made them memorable. Most pain I’ve felt since then has been minor in comparison. They still ache today and leave scars beyond the skin.
They forget to mention the queasy feeling you get from being around the fel. Once you’re bound, it’s always there. That’s one of those things you just learn to live with.
I’ve also been tattooed to tie myself to the shadow plane. It’s a useful talent, but not one that every demon hunter chooses. Some tattoos are more aimed at helping you manage your demon early on. Perhaps, I should have done that. Mal can be a pain sometimes.
More recently, I’ve worked with a fellow thero’shan, Fethas Soulthorn, and bound a demon’s eyes into mine. I hunted a shivarra that had been sending me visions in my dreams. My hunt ended in taking her eyes. Surprisingly, the felsight granted by my original blinding was only slightly diminished, and I gained some of the seer sight of the shivarra called Mother Shazadi. It will take time to learn how to use it.
However, without that sight, my hunt in Outland for our shan’do would have been for naught. It was then that I finally earned my name, Dreadwatcher.
Well, it’s been a while, hasn’t it? Almost two years ago my interest in World of Warcraft began to wane, and I began my hiatus from the game. I knew that I would return eventually, but I didn’t quite know when.
It seems that when is now. The Netherbane, smaller than it was but no smaller than intended, is returning to Azeroth. However, there will be some changes that follow us back.
First and foremost, the Netherbane site has been reduced to a simple blog. The three guild officers, Tharion Greyseer, Fethas Soulthorn, and Araatris Dreadwatcher, will maintain the site by posting announcements, stories, and in-character snippets. Secondly, interactivity will be handled through the Earthen Ring RP Network. The ERN has been a central feature of the Earthen Ring US server community for a few years now, and I feel that it’s important to continue supporting it by encouraging players to use its services. Lastly, the lore and lessons of the Netherbane methodology will be placed on another site, which is still being developed (more to come on that soon).
That said, I’m still rebuilding this side of things. More to come soon!